Appliance current ratings

I'm trying to figure loading for a generator. Manufacturing labels on many appliances (a/c, refrig, freezer, etc)list a current rating, like 13A, 7A, etc. Are these ratings peak current at startup, or average run current? If it's peak, does the formula I avg = .707I peak still apply? I notice the generators average wattage is about .65% of the surge wattage, but I figure that's a safety margin, right?
Bob S.
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its rated load. That is for devices that are on all the time. Things like a refrigerator will draw lots more current while starting for a few seconds, then draw the average current listed on the lable and then cut off and not use any current or maybe a very small ammount. Devices that have motors will take a large ammount of current to start up and then drop back to the name tage value. Do not worry about the .707 value and such in formulars , just use the value listed. The surge value listed on the generator is to allow for a short period of high current. The average wattage of the generator is what you need to look at and not worry about the surge current. That is mostly for advertising.
As most generators will have a 120 volt and 220 volt outlets, remember to try and ballance the current off each side of the two 120 volt circuits. The total wattage for the generator is for the 220 volt outlet. That means that if you have a 4000 watt generator you can only use about 2000 watts off each of the 120 volt outlets or each side of the 220 volt outlet. In other words there is one winding connected to the 220 volt outlet and it is the same one with a center tap that is going to the 120 volt outlets.
If you have a large load on the generator and need to start a motor such as a well pump youmay need to take some of the load off to get the motor started and then you can put the othe load back on.
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I suggest you visit the websites for Coleman, Yamaha or Honda generators. They have load calculations and lists of power draw for most household devices.
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It's my understanding that the amperage ratings on appliances are full load, after the device is running.
The couple times I've measured a window AC, it's been 25 to 40 amps to get it started, and then 8 or 9 to keep it running. About that much.
How about an actual use test? I had some gas left in the generator (Coleman 2200 watt) and for curiosity tried it on my living room AC. 10,000 bTU with a rotary compressor. Worked nicely. As expected, ran through fuel pretty fast, which was what I wanted. Wanted to run the tank dry so I could put the generator away.
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Stormin Mormon wrote:

Which brings up another question - gas stabilizers. The generator instruction book states that if you use a gas stabilizer in the fuel, it can remain in the tank for "up to 2 years". Gas stabilizer manufacturers make the same claim. Does the stuff really work that good???
Bob S.
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I've used in in my mower, chain saw and snow blower. Works for me.
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On Sat, 06 Aug 2005 16:30:38 GMT, RE: Re: Appliance current ratings

I've stored gasoline with 1oz/gal StaBilt in a sealed drum for 2-years with no problems.
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Stormin Mormon posted for all of us... I don't top post - see either inline or at bottom.

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